I’ve finally laid my 3 month old in bed and it’s late, she’s been bothered by colic this evening and I’ve juggled and patted, changed her bottom, cuddled, fed and prayed for her. My 3 year old is tossing and turning across the room from me, and she was up at 6am, wandering the halls, and knocking on the doors of our housemates. Bother; I think we may need to lock the door at night so she can’t escape our room, yes both children are still in our room; and I say this in almost a whisper because I’ve been told so often how undisciplined etc this is. Yet it’s my season.
There seems to be an absolute plethora now of mummy books, not just the ‘this is how to parent type’ books, though God knows we all need good, scientific based strategies and helpful phrases we can say to our children to learn boundaries, but also the books where mums are coming clean about what they can and can’t do. What their messy day to day life looks like. How the beautifully made up picture of them on facebook or their blog is just that, and what they really look like the rest of the time. While we’re at it may I state that icing (cake frosting for yee Americans) and makeup are considerably confusing to me, and only come out on very special occasions. Just saying . . .
And it’s precisely the real, that draws us back to these mum books again. That I’m not the only one who dresses my child, or sits at the table feeding her when she should be able to do it herself. I’m not the only one sitting up with a child with colic who won’t settle to a normal routine, and amidst all my friends serving up kale soup for dinner, I’m not the only one who’ll be cracking open a can of beans. Trust me, if I served up kale soup for dinner, my husband would likely walk out the door to the takeaway shop, it’s been known to happen.
I love how Erin Odom has journalled her thoughts, hopes, fears, failures, and desires in her e-book ‘The Woven Heart – Essays for Moms on Love, Life and Loss’. She cheers us on in our journey, but lets us peak inside hers. She gently challenges us to love, and not judge the mum who does it differently from our own opinionated, steadfast view on life, and to reach out to the neighbour just across the street, as well as the orphan across the seas.
She asks deep questions about life, love and loss, questions that don’t always have answers, those ones that we ask each other coffee, drawing out the wisdom of another through the stories they share. Sometimes that is precisely where the answers are found, in the stories of another, and we can look at a situation from another angle.
The stories here are captivating and real, snacks for the soul. I read them both in snippets and sat up late devouring them, because I had found a virtual friend, and yet while that may be true, the challenge resonated to focus on the friendships and relationships I have here, in my town, across the street, and in my home.
As a mother of three girls, and now pregnant with her first son, Erin shares helpful insight into pregnancy and birth. This book is worth the read just for these, as so many of us go into birth unprepared and become overwhelmed by the pain of the moment. A look at a few scenarios before they become our own can empower us with knowledge, which in and of itself is a powerful tool.
So yes, if you’re in the throes of motherhood, toddlerhood, baby hood or even staring down at your new baby belly, wondering where this is all going, this book is for you, and hey, maybe even if you’re not in this boat, it would help you understand us who are. 🙂